tv ABC 7 News at 11PM ABC July 26, 2011 11:00pm-11:35pm PDT
a fire pumping out a thick black cloud of smoke. >> and eight hours after it started, firecrews were pouring gallons of water on the hotspot. >> all was happening in solano county at the plant in fairfield. good evening. i'm dan ashley. >> and i'm carolyn johnson. there are no serious injuries, but for much of the day residents within a mile were asked to stay indoors. >> abc7's lisa amin gulezian is live. we will start with the fire itself. john has that. john, it took hours to put this thing out. >> yes, and finally dan and carolyn, firefighters stopped
pouring water on one of the trouble spots. the fairfield fire marshal says this inferno was n -- was an accident caused by employees doing welding near the stacks and stacks of plastic bins behind this plant. even after the monster fire was put out, flare ups continued through the late afternoon and early evening. about five hours after the flames erupted behind macro plastics, investigators pointed the finger at workers. >> we've confirmed with the business owners and the employees on site that we did have employees working with some type of an open flame device. i don't have details, but probably a blowtorch or welding in that area. >> the first call came in about 1:00 p.m. as a tower of black smoke funneled up to the sky, creating a giant mushroom cloud over solano county. the company makes plastic bins used by agriculture during harvest time. an estimated 15 to 30,000 of the bins went up in flames.
>> the challenge to this type of fire is the plastic burned extremely hot. there was intense heat and obviously the thick, dark smoke and it is dangerous to our personnel because we are right there with it. >> at the height, the fire reached six alarms. 120 firefighters came from all over solano county including teens from nearby travis air force base which brought two crash trucks used for airplane emergencies. marco plastics has been at this location for 20 years, never experiencing a fire according to a company official. about 45 employees work here. >> just very thankful that our employees evacuated safely, and we didn't have any injuries or anything like that. >> a company official told me tonight there is no damage estimate, and as far as macro plastics is concerned, the cause of the fire is unconfirmed despite what the fire marshal told us. three firefighters suffered
minor injuries. they were treated at the scene and firefighters will remain here baby-sitting the scene through the evening. johnal stone, abc7 news. >> thanks very much. the company has a proit good record, but cal-osha cited them for workplace health and safety violations. cal-osha found four violations during an inspection in 2007 including failure to guard machinery and properly service and maintain equipment. macro paid a total of $2100 as part of the settlement. the state has no record of workers being injured at the plastics plant. let's check in with lisa amin gulezian who spent the evening with neighbors who were very near the plant. lisa? >> carolyn, right now we are in the bedford hills subdivision which is less than a mile from macro plastics, and also at this moment there is no smoke in the air which means residents can open their windows, but things could change just like that.
>> it was so thick. the sun looked like the moon. it was so much thick, black smoke up there. >> it was a toxic smoke plume. witnesses say it shot up nearly a mile into the dark sky above macro plastics. and then the phone started ringing. the city sent out a reverse 9-1-1 call advising residents who lived within a mile of the plastic company to shelter in place. >> i will be staying indoors too because i can smell some of the smoke. they said to stay indoors. >> air quality management took air and soil samples. it is not clear what is in the smoke or how dangerous it is, but according to the district's director, the presence of burnt plastic makes this a toxic cocktail. >> is that the worst type of smoke you can encounter? it is definitely a witch's brew that we don't even know is brewing.
but if plastic is the main ingredient, it is toxic. >> i can smell it and it is burning my nose. >> this is dangerous. >> yes, i agree. this is dangerous stuff to our health. especially plastics. >> but the warning or the ominous dark cloud didn't stop people from driving to the area just to look. the smoke could be seen from cities all over the east bay and central valley, but as long as smoke is in the area, the suggestion for residents remains the same, stay inside. a lot of people are heeding that warning. the managers over at dover mobile home park on walters road are even considering draining the swimming pool there because of soot and debris that's fallen into it. >> air quality should get the tests back by thursday and friday. if you have been exposed to the toxins, signs to look for are watery eyes, sore throat and shortness of breath.
lisa amin gulezian, abc news. >> thanks, lisa. macro plastics supplies containers for the industry. the white bins are used in vineyards for collecting and hauling grapes to wineries. many wine makers use the same bins to ferment the crushed fruit. >> and there were so many compelling images. we want to show you some of the pictures sent in by abc7 viewers pow erred by youtube -- powered by youtube. >> it shows the heavy, thick smoke caused by the fire. they sent us this picture showing a fireball amid the smoke. >> it was taken from the entrance to the pittsburgh marina. brenda moore of fairfield took this of the billowing smoke. >> and steve up loaded this one near the travis boulevard exit near i-80 eastbound. and finally a panoramic image taken from gary priest and interstate 80, just covering the sky there.
>> remarkable images. >> and we invite you to continue up loading your pictures to you report at abc7news.com or e-mail them to you report at kgo-tv .com. we have all of the photos on our website, abc7news.com. just go there to check them out. the law enforcement officers from eight agencies spent today searching for two gunmen who opened fire on an east bay parks police officer. they combed the remote terrain near moraga. officers believed the gunmen were protecting an illinois marijuana growth near the mexican cartel. they closed one hiking trail. while some still feel safe, others are unnerved by the incident. >> we are earn concerned because we have been warned by people, you know, stay away. >> i asked my wife if she locked the front door. >> last night a parks officer was on patrol when the gunmen
fired assault rifles at him. he was not hit and rirnd fire. search teams -- and returned fire. search teams did not say whether they found anyone. >> a mountain lion is stalking livestock near half moon bay. it killed several sheep and goats found dead this morning. if you see a mountain lion, experts say wave your arms and make as much noise as you can and throw rocks to try to scare it away. >> a federal grand jury is charged with arranging fake marriages. the u.s. attorney in sacramento says the ringleader attempted at least 39 marriages charging foreigners $29,000 to get around the laws. most from russia and ukraine and europe. u.s. citizens who agreed were paid $5,000 each. the u.s. attorney says america's immigration system is not for sale. >> we are not talking about
downtrodden people who are looking for a way to get to a better life. we are talking about people making a profit. >> now, if convicted, the defendants face up to 10 years in prison. the lawyer for the man accused of the killing spree says his client is legally insane. but he is not sure thatbrae vie k is willing to enter an insanity plea. he attacked a summer camp for teenagers to inflict maximum damage on the party for failing to keep muslims out of norway. he also says his client took drugs before the attack to keep himself awake. police blew up explosives found on braevik's farm. the state department is warning americans traveling abroad to be extra cautious. it says al-qaeda's new leader is planning to target americans everywhere, and not just in the u.s. homeland. it is to uh -- to avenge osama bin laden's death. the u.s. says a senior al-qaeda leader killed in somalia indicated that the group was discussing
mumbai-style attacks on hotels in europe. >> action on the debt crisis postponed. >> also, the amazon tax. what the state is doing to collect a sales tax from your purchases. >> and the medical group that says hot dogs should be sold with a warning label. and then late other "nightline",. >> coming up on "nightline" in a major broadcast exclusive, they are accusing top international banker dominique strauss-kahn of assault. she -- what shehehehehehehehehei
>> closed captioning brought to the expected vote will not take place tomorrow. the congressional budget office has determined the proposed cuts will not yield as much money as previously thought. the countdown continues to a possible government default on august 2nd now. now a report from washington. >> americans are answering president obama's call to make their voices heard.
they crashed the website that house speaker john boehner, mitch mcconnell and others. they clogged capitol phones saying the deadlock on the nation's debt is not acceptable. >> we are in the thousands here. >> and they lined up outside the offices of congressman jeff miller. >> i think it is irrelevant if they come up with it on tuesday. >> it is not just ordinary americans who are worried. >> to have a de default -- a default would be a very, very, very serious event. not for the united states alone. but for gloat balance economy at large. >> a day after the president called for compromise, the two sides seemed farther apart than ever. there were chances they would overcome house party chances and less chance it would pass in the senate. president obama vowed to veto it. >> the tea party is in the driver's seat for the house republicans now. and that's a very, very scary
thought. >> and then there is a senate plan they call full of gimmicks. >> it is a $2.7 trillion increase in the debt ceiling with highly suspect spending reduction features. >> with just a week to go to the august 2nd deadline, this exercise in capital brinksmanship is bringing spending down to the last dollars. >> and it now appears the government may have special cash to pay if bills pass the august 2nd deadline. maneuvering by the treasury department and an inflow of tax payments will pay the bills until august 10th. after that though the government will not have the cash to pay social security benefit checks watt borrowing more money. and a new abc poll has found the economic downturn is forcing fundamental changes in the way we live. 54% of those surveyed said they had to change their life
styles significantly in this recession. 74% said someone in their household or close friend or family member has been laid off in the past year, and 82% 8 they are having a difficult time finding a job in their area of expertise. now, we would like very much to hear your personal test mown y'all, how the recession has impacted your life. record is on your -- record it on your cell phone and up load it to you report . abc7news.com so we can tell your story. california is beginning the process of figuring out the details of how to collect sales tax from on-line retailers like amazon.com. but some argue it is a waste of time. that's because amazon is collecting signatures for a ballot initiative to overturn the new tax law. some republican members of the board of equalization, the state tax agency says it doesn't make financial sense to proceed before knowing the outcome of the ballot initiative. on to the weather forecast, warm and going to stay that way.
>> let's check in with es spencer christian. >> this could be the first warmth we have seen in a longtime. we have low clouds and fog and sunny skies inland. it was warm in some of the inland locations. let's give uh closer look. cloverdale a high of 88 degrees and santa rosa 84. over in the inland, upper 80sin concord and 87 was the high in morgan hill. around around the bay it was a little less warm. 74 redwood city. 70 in oakland and 66 was the high in san francisco. right now we are looking at 53 in oakland and still a warm 71 in antioch. these are the highlights. they will push locally inland. further warming will occur tomorrow and the temperatures will peak this weekends. overnight lows will be mainly in the mid to upper 50s. so a mild night is on hand. a low of 61 at antioch which and not low at all. there is a weak trough in this jet stream as it is lifting
and pulling away. as it does so, it will allah for the expansion of very, very warm air. there is a huge warm air mass covering much of the nation. that will expand westward into california and into the bay area, and it will enhance the warming trend that has already begun here. so let's take a look at conditions tomorrow morning. 5:00 we will see some low clouds and fog across the bay area. it will all pull back about midday. we will have a pattern like we have seen the last couple days. fog lingering at the coast. around the bay, high temperatures ranging from low to mid60s near the coast to mainly 70s around the bay to the upper 80sand the low 90s in the warmest inland locations. in the south bay tomorrow we will see high temperatures generally in the low to mid80s. on the peninsula, mainly mid to upper 70s. 78 palo alto. low to mid60s at the coast and half moon bay, downtown san francisco will have a high of 67 and south san francisco 68. daily city, 62. up in the north bay, we will see highs 81 in san rafael and
86 santa rosa and 91 at cloverdale and 94 at ukiah. east bay highs in the 70s, 72 oakland and 75 newark and 78 fremont. inland east bay will be warmer with highs in the upper 80sin most locations. up to 90 in antioch and ?ient 1 in brents wood. 80s to about 90 inland. here is the accu-weather seven-day forecast from thursday through next tuesday, inland highs will range from low to mid-nineties. around the bay, low 80s. on the coast, upper 60s to around 70. and that's for the next seven days with little change. enjoy it while it lasts. things are certain to change. >> indeed. thanks, spencer. well, can you name the saddest scene in a movie? >> we'll show you the film that caused most tears in a uc berkeley study.cu
outstanding, outstanding. >> kid did pretty well. that's the day job for robert mcdaniels a coach for the park department in the city. but it is robert's hobby that is earning him special recognition. he came in 10th in the world for his age-group in the men's master championship in sacramento this month. congratulations. >> terrific. well, a group of health professionals claim hot dogs are as bad for your health as cigarettes. a group calling themselves the group for responsible medicine say more than one million hot dogs were served last year. the non-profit group says hot dogs like cigarettes should come with a warning. eating a hot dog every day increases the risk for colorectal cancer. and others say hot dogs are not toxic ?ie. have you ever wondered what the saddest scene in american movies are? wonder no more. check this out. >> champ wake up.
wake up. >> it is the moment in 1979's "the champ" when ricky cries over the death of his father who is a boxer. they reached that conclusion after testing 250 movie scenes on almost 500 people. they found more people cried over schroeder's tears than over the death of back -- bambi's mom which was sad. >> that is a downer. i didn't need to see that right now. >> she hates that movie. >> now to cheer us up, bambi upsets me. we are very sensitive up here. speaking of bad scenes, did you catch the giants game in philly? things didn't go well. this is a mild understatement to say the least. you make the call on a play at the plate here. was chase utley safe trying to go inside the park? sports is next. can i eat heart healthy without giving up taste?
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philly. barry zito took his spot and he got torched. the fanatic fired up for a rematch. zito found out he was starting in batting practice. that's kind of what he served up in the first toy ban yes. a three-1 homer and 4-1 phillies. zito allowed six runs in seven frames. back to back bad starts for him. chat utley drives -- chase utley drives one over the head and it ricochets off the wall. it is an inside the park homer. had one of these a couple years ago, almost the same play, and he is safe. it was a good call by inches. giants lose 7-2 and timmy may go tomorrow. a's and rays and brandon mccarthy and smoke. mccarthy goes 8 and strikes out three one run allowed. a's the bats come alive. kurt suzuki brings home a pair. the a's roll 6-1. they have taken the first two games of this series with tampa bay.
tennis, anyone. bank of the west classic as stanford and serena williams in her third event of the year. 6-0 and 6-0. alex smith has agreed to a 1-year deal to return to the 49ers. the question now is will he have competition? smith can't resign until friday, but it has reported that the former number one pick has agreed to $5 million. he showed a lot of leadership during the lockout. if anybody can revitalize smith's career. it might be the new head coach jim harbaugh. alex will be back, but are the niners going to bring in another vet for competition or insurance? long-time seahawk matt hasselbeck not going back to seattle and supposedly talkingwith the 9ers and titans. will the 49ers sign smith and hasselbeck? we will find out. spikes is going to the chargers. spikes is an asset on and off the field with the niners topping 100 tackles and he was
a great mentor for patrick willis, 14-year veteran. he has never made the playoffs. 49ers opened camp this morning at 7:00 a.m. somebody let him in, please. a lot of the niners had not even met harbaugh until today. walker getting acquainted. >> we just smiled, talk and shake hands. i'm glad he's our coach, and i'm just ready to get to it. >> he's got some energy, don't he? >> got a lot of energy. >> it is good. >> a college quarterback will continue his college career at san jose state. he started for the wolverines in twine and was used as a back up last year. he will have to sit out this season, but he will be eligible after this season. >> nice to be talking nfl again. thanks, larry. >> "nightline" is next. i'm dan ashley. >> and i'm carolyn johnson. for larry beil and carolyn spencer, we appreciate your=x=xx